For thousands of people just the thought of coming to the dentist gives them extreme anxiety. Whether they had a previous negative dental experience, fear of needles or drills or a severe gag reflex. Dental-phobia is real. Patients who suffer from dental phobia now have the opportunity to feel more relaxed with sedation dentistry. With sedation dentistry patients are placed in a relaxed comfortable state that they can feel at ease when undergoing their dental procedures. There are various methods to sedation, we offer oral sedation. No needles, or wires to get hooked up to, you just take one pill the night before or a couple of hours before your appointment. This method doesn’t entirely put you to sleep, but it relaxes you so that you hardly feel or remember the dental procedure. Sedation is beneficial for both the dentist and the patient. It allows an extensive dental procedure to feel like it was completed in a short period of time. Also by the patient being more relaxed it minimizes unnecessary movement that can delay a procedure. Since you won’t have to worry about pain and discomfort during your dental visit with our pain free dentistry method, you’ll be looking forward to comfortable and stress-free dental appointments with the help of sedation dentistry.
Oral cancer screenings
Oral cancer screenings have proven to be very effective for early diagnosis. Almost 42,000 Americans are diagnosed with oral and throat cancers per year. During your exam with the dentist, you can discuss your health history and they can examine your mouth and/or throat for signs of cancer. Regular visits to the dentist can increase early detection and reduce treatment-related health problems. Symptoms to look out for are sores or irritation that won’t go away. Red or white patches, pain, tenderness or numbness in the mouth or lips. A lump, thickening, rough spot, crust or small eroded area. Difficulty chewing, swallowing, speaking, or moving tongue or jaw and a change in the way your teeth fit together when you close your mouth.
The joints and jaw muscles that make it possible to open and close your mouth are called the temporomandibular joints (TMJ). They are the muscles and ligaments located on each side of your head and are used when you chew, speak or swallow. They also control the mandible (lower jaw) as it moves forward, backward and side to side. A dental examination includes checking these joints and muscles for tenderness, clicking, popping or difficulty moving. Any problems that prevent this complex system from working effectively usually result in a painful TMJ disorder. Possible causes of TMJ disorders are arthritis, dislocation, injury, tooth and jaw alignment, stress and teeth grinding.
There are several treatments for TMJ disorders an example would be practicing relaxation techniques to control jaw tension. Your dentist may also recommend a night guard or bite plate to decrease clenching or grinding. In some cases, your dentist may recommend fixing an uneven bite by adjusting or reshaping some teeth.
For patients who suffer from periodontal disease often the first steps in treatment is scaling and root planing (deep cleaning). This is a non-surgical procedure that removes etiologic agents such as dental plaque and tartar, or calculus, which causes gingivitis (inflammation of the gums). It has been proven the bacteria from periodontal infections can travel through the blood stream and affect other areas of the body, sometimes causing heart and respiratory diseases.
The scaling and root planing treatment (SRP) allows the practitioner to remove calculus and plaque attached to the tooth surface and below the gum line, along the root. It also allows them to remove the cementum and surface dentin that is embedded with unwanted microorganisms, toxins and tartar. The instrument used to perform the treatment is called an ultrasonic scaler. The scaler is used to literally smooth the root of the tooth to promote healing. It also includes an irrigation process to deliver an antimicrobial below the gums to help prevent bacteria from building up in the future.
Successful treatment helps to protect against tooth loss, reduces bad breath and eliminates superficial stains making for a more aesthetically pleasing smile.
The likelihood of developing pit and fissure decay begins early in life, so children and teenagers are obvious candidates. Dental sealants act as a barrier to prevent cavities. They are a plastic material usually applied to the chewing surfaces of the back teeth (premolars and molars) where decay occurs most often. The sealant is painted onto the tooth enamel, where it bonds directly to the tooth and hardens. This plastic resin bonds into the depressions and grooves (pits and fissures) of the chewing surfaces of back teeth. The sealant acts as a barrier, protecting enamel from plaque and acids. As long as the sealant remains intact, the tooth surface will be protected from decay. Sealants hold up well under the force of normal chewing and may last several years before a reapplication is needed. During your regular dental visits, your dentist will check the condition of the sealants and reapply them when necessary.
The use of lasers has been done in dentistry since 1990 to address a number of different dental problems. Lasers work by delivering energy in the form of light. When used for surgical and dental procedures, the laser acts as a cutting instrument or a vaporizer of tissue that it comes in contact with. It helps to minimize bleeding and swelling during soft tissue treatments. The common uses are for managing gum tissues during impressions for crowns or other procedures, remove inflamed gum tissues and aid in the treatment of gum disease. Laser procedures allow the dentist to be more precise when performing certain procedures. Lasers can also reduce symptoms and healing times associated with traditional therapies; reduce the amount of bacteria in both diseased gum tissue and in tooth cavities; and control bleeding during surgery.